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Bumpy Hillcrest Road only temporary

Recently a section of Hillcrest Road (between Purdue Lane and Bel Air Court) was repaved. Portions of the resulting roadway has a very irregular surface. Since the road markings have already been painted, it appears the project is done. Who is in control of the quality of the roadway surface? What is planned to correct this problem?

— Gary K., Medford

The good news about the long and winding road that leads to your door, Gary, is you’re not going to be left there. Public Works Director Cory Crebbin says work to improve the road’s condition is planned for the summer.

“I don’t pin it down more specifically than this summer,” he said. “In the not-too-distant future.”

The bumpy surface is “trench patch,” or the temporary solution that makes the road usable before it is fixed up with its final covering of asphalt. Crews typically cover the area that has been trenched and maybe another foot on each side, Crebbin said.

“The last thing we want to do is put down new asphalt,” he said, if the city is not sure yet whether all is well beneath the surface.

Cutting into asphalt can reduce its durability span by 40 percent, he said.

In the case of this section of Hillcrest, crews replaced a storm drain. Before laying new asphalt, it needed to send a camera device through the drain to make sure it is functioning correctly before repaving with asphalt.

In the meantime, though, those stripes that may seem to signify a rubber-stamp on the condition are also temporary so that the road can be used, bumps and all.

— Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.

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